Help California wildfire victims

Lyft driver robbed, almost carjacked in Gaslamp

An Amp glows on the dashboard of a driver's car on January 31, 2017 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Kelly Sullivan/Getty Images for Lyft)

SAN DIEGO — A Lyft driver was robbed and almost carjacked Saturday morning in the Gaslamp area of downtown, but the suspect was caught by police, according to authorities.

The incident happened at 3 a.m. in the 800 block of Sixth Avenue as the driver was walking to his car, according to San Diego Police Officer Tony Martinez.

The 23-year-old man opened the driver-side door when he was approached from behind by the suspect, 28-year-old Anthony Hernandez, Martinez said.

Hernandez asked the victim if he wanted to buy a phone, the victim said no, then Hernandez allegedly pushed the victim into the vehicle and demanded his cell phone and wallet, according to police.

Hernandez allegedly acted as if he were armed with a knife, threatened to kill the victim and the victim complied with the demands. Hernandez allegedly then pushed the victim into the car and told him to put the car key into the ignition. The victim did what he was told, Martinez said.

Hernandez tried to start the car, but the victim took the car key and ran away, flagging down San Diego Police bike officers who were patrolling nearby. The suspect ran and was detained about a half block away by a group of off-duty security guards, according to Martinez.

Officers took custody of Hernandez. The victim was not injured. His identity was not released.

Hernandez was arrested and booked into jail on suspicion of robbery and attempted carjacking.